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Scattered Site Clustering

     
1:44 pm on Aug 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member sgt_kickaxe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member

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We've all seen the site clustering Google has rolled out, the to xx results being from the same site, but I'm seeing much more scattering of clusters this week and was wondering if anyone else is too.

example.com
5 times on page 1
4 times on page 2
6 times on page 3
2 times on page 4
5 times on page 5
0 times on page 6
4 times on page 7
etc...

Multiple results but now multiple sets of multiple results. Also, in my niche I am seeing the same 2-3 sites intermingled to almost lock out any other site in the first 50-60 results. How do I compete against this? It's like no search engine I've seen before.
2:45 pm on Aug 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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If we really want to compete, it seems to me that page 1 is the big target for us. Also, the deeper pages are not even stable enough much of the time to even bother tracking, at least in any detail, except for some really major keywords.

How competitive is the query term where you see 5 results on page one - and is there any reason within the query that users would be looking for a specific business?
3:58 pm on Aug 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Seeing Tripadvisor, Booking.com, etc dominating some local travel stuff right now. Ran a few ranking reports as a test and saw maybe 2 or 3 sites claiming ~70% of the top 100. Not huge volume terms, but still...
4:06 pm on Aug 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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"But still..."? Please explain more. Is it just the idea itself that is troubling, or is there a practical issue here?

-----

Also, now that I re-read the OP I'm not sure how this is anything new - haven't our other threads already mentioned this kind of ranking a lot?
4:21 pm on Aug 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Well, specific to the travel industry perhaps, but with booking engines already dominating SERPs organically and via PPC, also having them show up in dozens of positions for a single local term is concerning.

Good for the booking engines sure - not so great for businesses where the 30% commission rate on sales is one of their highest costs of sale.

Perhaps it's a move by Google to funnel smaller businesses into PPC or other paid inclusion options (fair enough), but in this market it is worrying.
 

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